While web design trends come and go, there are a few things that every business website should always have:
What The Best Business Websites Have in Common
All websites should have these seven elements:
1. A Clear Purpose
When someone lands on your site, two things should instantly be clear: what you do and what you want the visitor to do.
Are you sharing information, looking to increase your customer base, and/or sell a product? Have a clear goal defined for each page of your website.
2. Strong, Professional Branding
Some small businesses underestimate the importance of branding. From your domain name to the colors you choose, everything that represents your business should be part of telling a story.
Your logo should be professional, not some free or inexpensive clip art that many other businesses may be using. The colors, fonts, and imagery on your site should be a reflection of your brand.
3. Simple Navigation
There are a lot of options when it comes to website menus: hamburger, drop down, scroll-triggered, and the list goes on. No matter which type of menu you choose, it’s important to make it as easy as possible for visitors to find what they need on your website. Your navigation should be simple and intuitive in both the design and the way the pages are organized.
Clear links to the most important pages, and a site map, are crucial for guiding visitors to the information they’re looking for.
4. Strong Calls to Action
A call to action should tell your reader what to do and, if possible, what they’ll get out of performing that action.
For example, an accountant might have a call to action like, “Simplify your taxes by scheduling an appointment with us today.”
Strategically placing CTAs in your content is another way that you can increase conversions. This simple CTA is eye-catching without being too intrusive:
5. A Great Mobile Experience
Mobile traffic accounts for over half of all web traffic so a good mobile experience is crucial. If your site doesn’t load quickly and provide a good user experience, you’ll lose visitors. (And those visitors aren’t likely to come back.)
Ensure that your web design agency creates responsive websites. Responsive web design means your site will look and perform well on any device: computer, tablet, or phone.
6. Compelling Content
For many businesses, your website is your first impression on a customer. You want to give them what they’re looking for, and perhaps even give them a reason to keep coming back.
It’s important that your content is relevant to your customer, informative, and optimized for search engines. Think about what your ideal customer would want to know about your product/services and create pages and blog posts around these topics. As you might have guessed, creating good SEO content isn’t easy. That’s why so many people hire digital marketing agencies to create their content!
7. Google Analytics
While you can technically have a business website without Google Analytics, we don’t recommend it. Google Analytics gives you an unbelievable amount of information about your website traffic and users. From traffic sources to the operating system most used by your visitors and so much more, you’ll learn about your users and better tailor your marketing efforts to them. You can even set up goals like a visitor making a phone call or filling out a contact form and track whether you reach those goals every month (or week).
Best of all? Google Analytics is completely free.
Setting up Google Analytics is relatively simple, but things like goal tracking are a bit trickier. Deciphering all of the data can also be overwhelming, but once you find your way around Analytics (or hire an agency to manage it for you), you’ll wonder what you ever did without it!
This post was contributed by Richard Horvath of Thee Digital in Raleigh, North Carolina. In his free time he enjoys running and spending time with his family.